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LMU Helps Lead the Way to a Greener L.A.

LMU Helps Lead the Way to a Greener L.A.

Loyola Marymount University is helping lead the way in making Los Angeles a greener city. The university participated as a cooperating organization in the Los Angeles Business Council’s (LABC) first annual Sustainability Summit on July 18. The summit, titled “Capitalizing on Green Business: Incentives, Opportunities and Solutions,” was held at UCLA’s La Kretz Hall.

LMU is a leader in its commitment to green-friendly practices. The university recycles treated waste water in its irrigation system, uses low-water consuming toilets and washers and developed the first university-wide recycling program in 1990. All of the university’s green waste is recycled, and LMU was the first college campus to recycle 50 percent of all its generated solid waste. LMU has the largest solar roof system of any university in the world. More than 70 percent of LMU’s sprinklers are controlled by a central irrigation system that responds automatically to local weather conditions. Most recently, Robert B. Lawton, S.J., president of LMU, created an Environmental Stewardship and Sustainability Committee that will lay the foundation for the university's campus-wide green-friendly efforts. LMU has received numerous awards and recognition for its environmental innovations, most notably a Green Power Purchasing Award for Onsite Generation.

“The entire LMU community is committed to creating a culture of sustainability through education, measurement and action,” said Lynne B. Scarboro, LMU’s senior vice president for administration and chair of the environmental committee.

Not only is going green consistent with LMU’s mission, it is also has proven to be a sound business practice. For example, by using on-site solar generation, LMU has been able to effectively integrate solar electricity into its energy mix, thereby lowering operating costs and reducing purchases of expensive peak electricity. In addition to generating electricity, the solar roof system provides thermal insulation and protects the roof from weather and UV radiation, resulting in decreased heating and cooling energy costs and extended roof life. The solar roof system saves the university more than $150,000 a year.

The summit was established to provide businesses with practical and profitable ways to go green and addressed the incentives for and challenges of making those changes. Featured speakers included Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Eric Garcetti, Los Angeles City’s 13th Council president and many prominent industry leaders and financial experts in the area of sustainability.

“The 2007 Sustainability Summit is being convened at a critical time, when key private and civic stakeholders are setting out to make Los Angeles ‘the greenest city in the nation’,” said Mary Leslie, president of the LABC.